Mainland China has indicated via a series of measures and announcements, a shifting away from a tough community-lockdown and mass-testing approach to Covid-19 that had marked its ‘zero Covid’ policy for nearly three years.
In other developments, on Monday, Reuters news agency had reported – citing two sources said to have knowledge of the matter which it did not identify – that the mainland authorities might announce 10 new Covid-19 easing measures as early as Wednesday.
China’s management of the disease could be downgraded as soon as January, to the less strict ‘Category B’ from the current top-level ‘Category A’ of infectious disease, the sources said on Monday, speaking on condition of anonymity, stated Reuters.
Coincidentally in Monday trading on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, shares linked to the six Macau casino operators had all risen in value, some more than 15 percent.
Nonetheless the Macau authorities had over the weekend announced tougher rules for arrivals from mainland China, after a number of visitors including some air travellers, tested ‘positive’ for infection after initially testing ‘negative’.
With effect from Tuesday (December 6), travellers entering Macau from mainland China – even if not among those categorised as needing to undergo hotel-based quarantine-on-arrival – will be required to comply with stricter nucleic acid test and rapid antigen test requirements.
Travellers entering Macau who have visited ‘low-risk’ areas for Covid-19 in the mainland are required to display a 24-hour ‘negative’ result and a rapid antigen test result done within six hours of intended arrival in Macau. But people that have visited places on the mainland deemed ‘high-risk’ for Covid-19 transmission still have to do a five-day hotel quarantine on arrival, plus three days of isolation, either at home or at another hotel venue.
Currently, all arrivals from mainland China are required to self-test for Covid-19 with a rapid antigen test every day for five consecutive days.
Macau’s Novel Coronavirus Response and Coordination Centre announced on Monday that as of 6pm that day, the city had identified 56 Covid-19 cases since November 28.
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”We committed to the government to provide a full business idea and plan for Phase 1b around 12 months after the casino opens, therefore, probably early 2025”
President of the Mohegan Inspire Entertainment Resort in South Korea